By Michael Eboh
The northern part of Nigeria has joined the league of oil-producing regions, as the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Friday announced that it has discovered crude oil, gas and condensates in the Kolmani River region at the border community between Bauchi and Gombe states.
In a statement in Abuja, the NNPC, disclosed that the finding was coming after eight months of crude oil exploration in the area, in the Kolmani River II Well on the Upper Benue Trough, Gongola Basin, in the North-Eastern part of the country.
Specifically, the drilling of the Kolmani River II Well was flagged-off in a colourful ceremony by President Muhammadu Buhari on the 2nd of February, 2019.
In a statement in Abuja, Acting Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Mr. Samson Makoji, said the NNPC acquired 435.54km2 of 3D Seismic Data over Kolmani Prospect in the Upper Benue Trough, Gongola Basin.
This, he said, was to evaluate Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company, SNEPCo, Kolmani River 1 Well Discovery of 33 BCF and explore deeper levels.
Makoji said the well was drilled in the Northern area with “Ikenga Rig 101” to a total depth of 13,701 feet encountering oil and gas in several levels, adding that a Drill Stem Test (DST) is currently on-going to confirm the commercial viability and flow of the Kolmani River reservoirs.
He said, “On Thursday 10th October 2019, at 18:02hours, one of the [crude oil] reservoirs was perforated and hydrocarbon started flowing to the wellhead at 21:20hours in which the gas component was flared to prevent air charge around the rig.
“Preliminary reports indicate that the discovery consists of gas, condensate and light sweet oil of API gravity ranging from 38 to 41 found in stacked siliciclastic Cretaceous reservoirs of Yolde, Bima Sandstone and Pre-Bima formations. Computation of hydrocarbon volume is on-going and will be announced in due course.
“The corporation has also acquired additional 1183km2 of 3D seismic data over highly prospective areas of Gongola Basin with a view to evaluating the full hydrocarbon potential of the Basin.
“NNPC has deployed world-class cutting-edge technologies including Surface Geochemistry, Ground Gravity/Magnetic, Stress Field Detection, Full Tensor Gradiometry aerial surveys to de-risk exploration in the frontier basins. The NNPC plans to drill additional wells for a full evaluation of the hydrocarbon volume [crude oil and gas] in the Gongola Basin.”
Makoji noted that during the spud-in ceremony of Kolmani River II, President Muhammadu stated the commitment of his administration to the exploration for oil and gas in the frontier basins in the entire length and breadth of the country. The basins include the Benue Trough, Chad Basin, Sokoto and Bida Basins.
“He also stated that attention would be given to the Dahomey and Anambra Basins which have already witnessed oil and gas discoveries.
The discovery of oil and gas in commercial quantity in the Gongola Basin will attract foreign investment, generate employment for people to earn income and increase government revenues.”